LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) -- About 60 former U.S. Marines are noting their involvement in the invasion of Iraq a decade ago with a weekend event in Las Vegas.
Members of the 6th Motor Transport Battalion were one of the first U.S. units to invade Iraq in early 2003. They had been deployed to the Middle East in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. On March 19, the unit was among the first U.S. units to enter a country then controlled by Saddam Hussein.
Retired Sgt. Daniel Thomas, who has organized this weekend's festivities, praised the members of the Nellis-based unit as well as their families and friends.
"Our accomplishments and our ability to endure the hardships of combat were possible due to the family and community support offered to us as 'Vegas Marines,' " Thomas said in a news release. "Las Vegas has become a special place for all of us and it is fitting that Las Vegas is where we will gather to make our 10-year anniversary."
The unit spent several months in combat and was split up during the time as it protected and maintained supply lines for the operations. Other Marines secured, rebuilt and protected bridges for the advancing U.S. forces.
The unit received several prestigious individual and unit awards, including the Presidential Unit Citation.
The events this weekend include a reception, buffet dinner, speakers and musicial performances on Saturday evening at Las Vegas National Golf Club.
Horses4Heroes, a La Vegas-based, nonprofit, is hosting a family day and helping coordinate the weekend's activities. Golf and a horseback riding event are also being held.